If you take all of the offline poker tournaments that happen in a year and add them together, some people have estimated that they would not equal the number of online poker tourneys that are played on Poker Stars, a single online website. While online tournaments can be very fun, they also have a very different flow than their offline counterparts and with this different flow comes a much different strategy. Here are some tips to keep in mind when playing in online tournaments.
One of the biggest differences between a typical offline poker tournament and online poker tourneys is the fact that aggression is ramped up to almost ridiculous levels in online tournaments. People are aggressive to the point of being past what some would consider having normal survival instincts and because of that people tend to get themselves in trouble through aggression more often than not in online tournaments. As a famous poker announcer once quipped, people in online tournaments are great at accumulating chips but not so good at keeping them once they have them.
How do you put this to your advantage? Simple! You sit back and wait for very good hands and then when you get those big hands you push them with everything you have. This is a strategy that can be thought of as your normal strong-tight strategy on steroids because you are waiting for tighter hands and you are being more aggressive than you normally would be. You might be worried that your behavior will be plain to all at the table but you might actually be quite surprised at how little ultra aggressive players know about the people they are playing with. At least at the start of online poker tourneys you will get calls for your all-in moves regardless of what your table image happens to be.
When you play an offline poker tournament, what you are doing is actually sitting down at the table with a bunch of other people and putting down serious money in order to play a game of poker. Because the cost of the tournament is so much higher in the real world, you have a much higher connection to the buy-in you just made. You will do a lot more to protect that buy-in and so will the people you are playing.
In the online world however, things are completely different. The online Poker Tournaments of the world can sometimes have buy-ins that are less than a dollar and this is of course because of how cheap it is to run online poker tournaments. The cheapness of the tournament comes into it big time and feeds into the aggression, making the naturally more aggressive online player even more aggressive than they would normally be. Just one more reason to abandon your normal poker tournament strategy and play super tight and super strong in Online Poker Tourneys.